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The Future of Power Mowers: Hydrogen?

(Dan Delventhal photo)

(Dan Delventhal photo)

A FEW DAYS AGO we blogged about new propane technology that was licensed by Fiskars. Today a SafeLawns member from Connecticut sent us a photo of what he believes might be the future of power mowers. Dan Delventhal, the founder of, is a major proponent of reel mowers in his thriving business — yet he has found that reel mowers are not practical in all situations where the grass gets too long, or if a lawn is comprised of more stiff-stemmed weeds than grass plants.

For situations where he needs to use a rotary mower to satisfy the aesthetic expectations of the customer, Dan has converted a 22-inch Toro mower to pure hydrogen power, which he manufactures from power generated by solar panels. He calls his trademarked contraption a “HydroMow.”

“It’s been a project in the works for almost two years,” he said. “Imagine being able to salvage gasoline powered equipment by converting it to burn straight hydrogen.”

He hopes to be able to scale the manufacturing one day soon to bring costs more in line with conventional equipment.

“It’s one very expensive lawnmower, and hydrogen today costs more than gasoline per unit of power, and the tank needs frequent refilling, but it burns with zero emissions (except water vapor),” he said. “In mass production costs go down radically and with time and volume production, hydrogen will become less than gasoline. So we are blazing trails here! Imagine if the billions the government gave to the exorbitantly profitable oil companies to help them look for more oil, were plowed into Hydrogen or other alternatives?”

Something tells me that day is not far in the future.

About The Author

Paul Tukey

An international leader of the green movement, Mr. Tukey is a journalist, author, filmmaker, TV host, activist and award-winning public speaker, who is widely recognized as North America's leading advocate for landscape sustainability and toxic pesticide reduction strategies.

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